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My grandmas looking for a .38 for home defense she's wanting either a Smith & Wesson or a Charter Arms i need suggestions for her she currently has a 30 year old Charter Arms .38 snub nose!
 

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For home, I would recommend a Ruger SP101 with a 3" barrel loaded with .38 Spl Speer Gold Dots. The reason for the Ruger is the weight to absorb some of the recoil.
 

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For home, I would recommend a Ruger SP101 with a 3" barrel loaded with .38 Spl Speer Gold Dots. The reason for the Ruger is the weight to absorb some of the recoil.
That's the way I would go also. Add a Crimson Trace to guide older eyes, and she's good to go. The laser alone should be enough to scare the crap out of a bad guy.
 

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If she's not going to be carrying it concealed, I'd give her all the weight (recoil management) and sight raduis (she is a Gramma, give her every advantage) you can. I'd suggest maybe a Ruger GP100,, or as you stated a Smith and Wesson N frame, stainless for low maintenance, 4" barrell, loaded w standard pressure .38s. Have a competent smith bob the hammer and really smooth out the double action. Work w her to find some grips that fit her hands and allow her to work the trigger rapidly w/out constantly adjusting her grip. If the Crimson Trace's will fit that bill, even better.
The CA snub loaded w a standard pressure .38 hp's, or if she has trouble w/those, some FBI wadcutters can be dropped in her pocket to answer the door late at nigh, as I am assuming the bigger revolver would be more designed for static defense.

hope this helps,

dan
 

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Is she unhappy with the snub nose? Most reasonably well made guns, and some that aren't, work just fine after 30 years if they're been maintained at all.

If she can deal with the recoil, no problem. Otherwise might go for a heavier 357 and have her shoot 38 out of it. Should help reduce recoil.
 

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S&w 686
 

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Look for a nice used S&W Model 10.
 

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I would say get a K frame .38 special....model 10, etc.
 

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Look for a nice used S&W Model 10.
The forum has spoken here...

After my sister and her husband split up and she moved into a house of her own, this is what I gave her to use for HD after some instuction. Grandma would do nicely with this also. You can find a nice used model 10 for around 2 bills if you look.

 

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Look for a nice used S&W Model 10.
+1. I think a Model 10 or a Model 15 would be about right for Grandma. Not too heavy for her to hold and yet heavy enough to absorb 38Spl recoil for a comfortable enough shoot. Look for a nice 4" S&W K frame in 38Spl for Grandma.

PS...Works pretty well for Grandpa too.
 

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i would get a j-frame
 

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For just HD? I agree with those who would go with the heavier firearm to absorb the 'punch'...:yup:
 

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My only issue with a 4 inch is that it's easier for a bad guy to grab. I'd suggest a finding a Ruger Speed Six in either 38 or 357 with a 2 & 3/4 inch barrel with Pachmayr Compacs, or a Smith 3 inch 13 or 65 with the same grips. Considering it's "Grandma", I'd load it with Buffalo Bore Standard Pressure 158's. My 357 Speed Six is loaded with the +P's.
 

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To put it bluntely, Grandma's hands will determine which S&W frame size you ought to be considering. For many grandma's a K frame is too large, period.

I too recommend the Ruger SP101 but the 2" version that comes with the factory bobbed hammer. You can add a lighter main spring that makes it a wonderful trigger and it does make shooting .38's almost a pleasure! If someone is close enough to have grabbed any handgun then they were already too close. An inch or two in barrel length means nothing as far as weapon retention because if they can grab a 4" they can just as easily grab the 2" version and the typical grandma isn't going to be able to stop them. She should have already made her shoot/don't shoot decision or she got caught by surprise and it's a mute point anyway.

You don't need the extra sight radius of 3 versus 2" because she's not going to be aiming carefully enought to utilize whatever little advantage there is to the one extra inch in a purely defensive situation inside the home.

You can change the spring on the Ruger in 10 minutes at a cost of $8.00 plus shipping with utterly reliable results that will make the trigger pull as light as it ought to be.

I'd also recommend considering some true wad cutter rounds if she finds a 125 gr JHP or +p rounds too harsh. Wad cutters are so soft they're a pleasure to shoot out of the Ruger platform and they seem to be pretty effective for what they are.

And I too think this is one situation where a laser "may" be a good option as long as you think she'll keep up with the batter etc.

But again, her hand size relative to the grip/frame is critical. The SP101 is a good gun for something like this. Then I would buy her a handful of speed loaders (the kind with the know you turn to release the rounds) and teach her to use them.

If Grandma has larger hands and can handle the larger frames then the advice given previously would be great.

And another option is a good S&W 640 or even the 60-3; for all the reasons state above....
 

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+1. I think a Model 10 or a Model 15 would be about right for Grandma. Not too heavy for her to hold and yet heavy enough to absorb 38Spl recoil for a comfortable enough shoot. Look for a nice 4" S&W K frame in 38Spl for Grandma.

PS...Works pretty well for Grandpa too.
Could not agree more. My wife's model 15-4 4" is her HD gun. Fantastic shooter, great trigger and very little recoil. :yup:
 

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IMHO =
NO "air weights"

I would recommend a Ruger SP101 Either a 2 1/4 0r 3 1/ 16with a laser grip ( note the laser grip will add to rcoil but it, IMPO, it is worth it )
Be sure to have the gun "tuned by a "good" gunsmith" Rugers are not "smooth out of the box" like S&W's + the trigger pull is heavy,

Ammo = While I use .357 Hydro- shocks, they may be Tooo much for "Grandma" my sister in law,who has "carpal tunnel'" problems, uses .38 spec. silver tips.

Puffer
 
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